Saturday, 19 April 2014

Aikido in Bucks Cross, Monday 21st (as normal)

We don't let a little think like a Bank Holiday stop us. We'll be doing Aikido, as usual, this coming Monday at 7:30 in Bucks Cross, North Devon. So why not come and join us? Naturally we'll have our regular class on Thursday too. And if that isn't enough to keep you going, remember that Sensei Richard Small, who is our club's senior weapons instructor, also has his own weapons-oriented class in Bideford every Wednesday at 7:00. See his site for more information.

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Street-fighting Aikido for self-defence!

Yes, yes, I know that Aikido is the art of peace and that we strive to find harmony and gentleness in our technique. But that is only part of the story. Aikido is also a practical method of self-defence. In fact, my favourite Aikido book, written in the early '60s by Koichi Tohei under the supervision of the Founder, Morihei Ueshiba, is called "Aikido, The Co-ordination of Mind and Body for Self-defense". In my view, you can only fully understand Aikido if you study both the mental and the physical aspects, the soft and the hard. I came across this video made by a Czech Aikido club this week, emphasising the self-defence aspect of Aikido. What do you think...?

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Aikido Class Schedule, April 2014

There are a few changes to our schedule this month. There are no classes on Monday 7th April or on Thursday 17th April. There is, however, a special jo workshop (the third of three devoted to the 31 Count Kata) given by Sensei Small this Tuesday (8th of April). Apart from that, all our classes are as usual each Monday and Thursday. All classes start at 7:30.

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Our Three Aikido Instructors - get to know the Hartland Aikido Club!

We may be a tiny club in a remote area of North Devon, but even so the Hartland Aikido Club can offer students a much broader range of Aikido teaching than many big city-based clubs. How come? Well, it turns out that we have no less than three black-belt instructors who have been practising Aikido since the '70s and '80s. What's more, the instructors have experience of a very varied range of Aikido 'styles'. Huw Collingbourne has been taught principally in the 'Ki Aikido' style which incorporates numerous 'Ki exercises' to cultivate calmness under pressure (both in and out of the dojo). Pete Blayney has practised with many different clubs and teachers and he brings to the Hartland Club a vast knowledge of practical self-defence techniques and skills. Finally, Richard Small is an expert in weapons (jo and bokken) as taught by the 'Iwama' school of Aikido. For more information see the Instructors Page.

Whether you are new to Aikido or an old hand you may find that the unusually wide range of skills available from the three instructors at the Hartland Club will help you either to discover Aikido for the first time or else to broaden your existing skills.

Everyone who has an interest in Aikido is welcomed at the Hartland Club. Have no fear that you will be told that yours is the 'wrong' style of Aikido or that we won't practise with students from your organisation! On the contrary, it is our aim to work together and explore all aspects of this wonderful martial art. So if you are in the area, please come and join us!

Monday, 24 March 2014

Aikido, Japanese Martial Art, from North Devon to Hollywood!

OK, OK, so let's be honest, your chances of becoming the next Steven Seagal are probably pretty remote. Having said that, James O'Donnell the chief instructor with the British Ki Aikido Association (to which the Hartland Aikido Club is affiliated) is a professional movie stunt man. See him in action here:

And then, of course, there is Seagal...

Nope, I can't promise that if you learn Aikido with us, here in North Devon, you'll end up in Hollywood. But stranger things have happened. So why not come and join us? Who knows where it might take you....!

Thursday, 6 March 2014

Aikido Is Bullshit

No, I didn't say that! This is the opinion of Master Ken. And who am I to disagree? master Ken is, after all, the highest ranked (11th dan) martial artist on this or any other planet. Sadly there are no Ameri-do-te classes here in North Devon. So I guess I'll just have to stick with Aikido! ;-)

Friday, 28 February 2014

31 Count jo kata workshop (part 2) next week

Just a reminder that there is no class next Monday (3rd March) but we have an extra class - the second in a series of workshops on the 31-count jo kata, taught by Sensei Richard Small - on Tuesday the 4th, at 7:30. If you want to learn this kata or deepen your understanding of it, this is a fantastic opportunity. Members of other aikido clubs (or organisations) are most welcome to join us.